Experiencing Pasar Klewer as Tourist Destination
Vending in street markets is considered as parallel leisure; particularly where people tend to move to suburban locations in order to experience the difference from the routine shopping (Powe, 2006). The street markets in urban settings may be considered as ‘socially responsible distribution centres’ with the initiatives that provide consumers with market access for goods and services that they can benefit from by either buying or selling, thus neutralizing the disadvantages they suffer due to inadequate physical links to large retail outlets, information asymmetries and weak bargaining power (Vachani and Smith, 2008).
These markets reflect the characteristics of users, varying degrees of accessibility to diverse populations and state policies towards markets (Stillerman, 2006). The differences in shopping behaviour correspond to clear differences in prices between grocery and food stores serving the two shopping cultural groups. However, some supermarkets also have lower prices across a range of food products but may not be able to simulate the ethnic surroundings of street markets (for example Ackerman and Tellis, 2001).
In addition to cultural tourism, the city of Solo is also famous for shopping tourism. One of the shopping activities that cannot be missed is shopping at Pasar Klewer (Klewer market), Klewer Market is the biggest batik market in Indonesia. Klewer market is a market that provides a wide range of batik fabrics. Starting from printed batik cotton for the cheap one, until the silk batik worth millions of rupiah are available here. Here you can buy clothes at a low price, because Klewer market is a wholesaler market. Klewer Market is not only as an economic hub, but also a shopping destination.
Klewer Market started from Japanese colonial period, where many fabrics and garments hung on seller shoulders, because the merchandise dangling irregular or “kleweran”, so it called Klewer market. Klewer Market is located in west gate of Keraton Surakarta and south of the Great Mosque. In addition to a cloth merchant, around Pasar Klewer there are also foods vendors, also as culinary destination.
Shopping experience at Pasar Klewer is not only about buying something cheaper than in malls or supermarket but it will give core value than shopping itself, tourist interaction with local community. The atmosphere of Klewer traditional market has become main attraction, added by Solo’s merchant hospitality.